Our Privacy policy

Historic Houses is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy.  This Privacy Policy sets out the way we process your personal information and we’ve created this page to make sure you are aware of how we use your data. We will always refer to this page when we ask you for your consent and we’ll keep this page updated so that you can be confident when sharing your information with us that it will be only used for what we describe here.

Historic Houses is the trading name of the Historic Houses Association of 2 Chester Street, London SW1X 7BB, a not-for-profit organisation and limited company registered in England and Wales (02001057). Historic Houses is the 'data controller' of your personal data and is subject to the Data Protection Act 1998 ("DPA") (and, when it takes effect on 25 May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (the "GDPR")). Historic Houses is registered with the UK Information Commissioner's Office with registration number Z4898371.

How we collect your information

We may collect your personal information in a few limited ways, namely:

  • Directly from you, when you fill in an application for membership, when you make enquiries on our website, or when you interact with us during your time as a member in various other ways (for example, where you attend our AGM or an event organised by us);

  • From someone else who has bought membership on your behalf (for example where they have bought Historic Houses membership for you as a gift and provided us with your contact details for that purpose);

  • On rare occasions, where we receive information about you from another member of Historic Houses (for example, where a house member passes on your details to us in connection with a complaint or query you have raised when visiting that house member's property).

Scannable cards

We use barcodes on our membership cards to collect information on your visits. This data includes the properties you have visited, the date that you visited and your membership number. We use this information to understand our supporters' visiting trends and to reimburse the houses you visit as part of our member access scheme. We also use this information to make our communications to you more relevant.

The types of information we collect

We may collect the following types of personal data about you (and your family members, where relevant):

  • Contact and communications information, including your contact details (including email address(es), telephone numbers and postal address(es) and records of communications and interactions we have had with you;

  • Financial information, including Direct Debit details (but not your payment card details, which we never collect or store ourselves since we always use a third party 'payment gateway' to process card payments);

  • Certain other information which you volunteer when making use of your membership benefits (for example, when making use of advisory services or directory listings, attending Historic Houses events, or expressing your views on issues which we are discussing and/or lobbying Government about).

We may also collect limited data concerning your health or medical conditions, where you have volunteered this, for example so that we can cater for you when you attend a Historic Houses event.

How we use personal information

Personal information provided to us will be used for the purposes outlined at the time of collection or application in accordance with the preferences you express.

Personal data collected and processed by us may be used for the following purposes:

  • Administration of membership(s);

  • Fulfilment of orders for goods and services;

  • Telling you about special offers especially for our supporters from partners that support our cause.

where this is necessary for the performance of a contract (including the Terms of Membership) with you.

  • Research and statistical analysis;

  • Communication about our work, membership, and other activities that we think may be of interest to you;

  • Administration of donations and legacies;

where this is necessary for our legitimate interests (meaning our interests in growing the work of Historic Houses and supporting all our members, including by representing their interests before Government).

  • Tailoring our messages to our potential and existing supporters to ensure all marketing communications you receive from us are relevant;

where this is necessary for our legitimate interests, and where we send marketing communications by electronic means, where we have your consent.

Your location where provided

We use geolocation on our main website. If you let your device share this information with us, we will use it to personalise your experience with us. Your device or web browser will usually prompt you when this is requested.

The type of things we may use your location for include:

  • Sorting search results by your location.

  • Making our homepage relevant to you and your location.

Your marketing preferences

Historic Houses will always act upon your wishes in respect of what type of communications you want to receive and how you want to receive them. There are some communications, however, that we need to send you regardless of your marketing preferences. These are what we would describe as essential communications to fulfil our contractual obligations to you as a member of Historic Houses. Examples of this type of communication would be:

  • Transaction notifications, such as payment receipts or Direct Debit confirmations.

  • Membership related mailings such as your renewal reminder, our regular magazine and AGM notices.

You are always in control of how we communicate with you. You can update your choices and/or your contact details through your member profile page online or by contacting us at:


Telephone: +44(0)1462 896688

Email: members@historichouses.org

Post: Historic Houses Membership, PO Box 21, Baldock SG7 5SH.

House members, next generation, associate house members and corporate members:

Telephone: +44(0)207 259 5688

Email: info@historichouses.org

Post: Historic Houses Membership, 2 Chester Street, London SW1X 7BB.

Sharing your information with others

We do not sell or share your personal information for other organisations to use other than as set out below.

Personal data collected and processed by us may be shared with the following groups where necessary:

  • Historic Houses employees and volunteers, for the purposes of administering your membership and giving you access to the full range of membership benefits to which you are entitled.

  • Also, under strict obligations of confidentiality and with other appropriate contractual protections in place:

    • Our Contractors (such as our membership administrators, Hall McCartney Ltd).

    • Our Advisors

When we allow such third parties access to your information, we will always have complete control of what they see, what they allowed to do with it and how long they can use it.

How long your information is kept

We hold your information only as long as necessary for each purpose we use it. For most membership data, this means we retain it for so long as you have a valid Historic Houses membership and for a period of six years after your last interaction with us (for accounting, tax reporting and record-keeping purposes).

Your rights

You have the right to ask us, in writing, for a copy of all the personal data held about you (this is known as a 'subject access request'). A copy will be sent to you as soon as possible and this will be no later than one month after your request.

If you would like to access your personal data held by us, please apply in writing to our membership team:

Historic Houses - Subject Access Request, PO Box 21, Baldock SG7 5SH.

 Under the DPA, you also have the following rights:

  • To require us not to send you marketing communications;

  • To require that we cease processing your personal data if the processing is causing you damage or distress.

Once the GDPR takes effect on 25 May 2018, you will also have the following additional rights:

  • To require us to correct the personal data we hold about you if it is inaccurate;

  • To request that we erase your personal data;

  • To request that we restrict our data processing activities (and, where our processing is based on your consent, you may withdraw that consent, without affecting the lawfulness of our processing based on consent before its withdrawal);

  • To receive from us the personal data we hold about you which you have provided to us, in a reasonable format specified by you, including for the purpose of you transmitting that personal data to another data controller; and

  • To object, on grounds relating to your particular situation, to any of our particular processing activities where you feel this has a disproportionate impact on your rights.

Please note that the above rights are not absolute, and we may be entitled to refuse requests where exceptions apply: for example, if we can show our processing is necessary for a lawful purpose set out in this Privacy Policy.

Updating and amending your personal information

We will always try to keep your data as up-to-date as possible.  If, at any time, you want to update or amend your personal data or marketing preferences then you can do so by logging into your profile online. Alternatively, you can contact our membership team on:


Telephone: +44(0)1462 896688

Email: members@historichouses.org

Post: Historic Houses Membership, PO Box 21, Baldock SG7 5SH.

House members, next generation, associate house members and corporate members:

Telephone: +44(0)207 259 5688

Email: info@historichouses.org

Post: Historic Houses Membership, 2 Chester Street, London SW1X 7BB

The verification, updating or amendment of personal data will take place within 28 days of receipt of your request.

Cookies and Links to Third Party Websites


Our website uses cookies to distinguish you from other users of our website. This helps us to provide you with a good experience when you browse our website and also allows us to improve our site. For detailed information on the cookies we use and the purposes for which we use them see our Cookie Policy.

Links to third party websites

This Privacy Policy applies solely to the personal data collected by Historic Houses and does not apply to third party websites and services that are not under our control. We cannot be held responsible for the privacy policies of third party websites and we advise users to read the privacy policies of other websites before registering any personal data.

Securing your personal data

We recognise that many people have concerns about providing personal information online and we work hard to ensure that your data is kept safely and securely at all times. These are the measures that we take to secure your information whilst using our web based services.

We use encryption both when your information is moving to or from our web services and also whilst your information is held by us.

Our ‘historichouses.org’ web pages use only a secure, encrypted https format (identifiable by the padlock in the address bar of your browser).  This provides you with confidence that your communications are safe and carried out directly with an authentic Historic House website and web server.

Our web servers use encryption and only store information for a temporary period. Once you have fully submitted your information, any temporary information is purged from our systems.

Contact and complaints

If you have any queries about this Privacy Policy or how we process your personal information, or if you wish to exercise any of your rights under applicable law, you may contact the Director of Finance and Operations:

  • by email: info@historichouses.org;

  • by telephone: 0207 259 5688;

  • or by post: Historic Houses, 2 Chester Street, London SW1X 7BB.

If you are not satisfied with how we are processing your personal information, you can make a complaint to the Information Commissioner. You can find out more about your rights under applicable data protection legislation from the Information Commissioner’s Office website available at www.ico.org.uk.

Changes to our Privacy Policy

We will update this privacy policy form time-to-time to make sure that it stays up-to-date with how we use your personal data and to meet any new legal requirements. The current version will be posted on this page of our website.